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A silver-oxide battery (IEC code: S) is a primary cell using silver oxide as the cathode material and zinc for the anode. These cells maintain a nearly constant nominal voltage during discharge until fully depleted. They are available in small sizes as button cells, where the amount of silver used is minimal and not a significant contributor to the product cost.
|Specific energy||130 Wh/kg|
|Energy density||500 Wh/L|
|Nominal cell voltage||1.55V|
Silver-oxide primary batteries account for 30% of all primary battery sales in Japan (64 out of 212 million in February 2020).
A silver-oxide battery uses silver(I) oxide as the positive electrode (cathode), zinc as the negative electrode (anode), plus an alkaline electrolyte, usually sodium hydroxide (NaOH) or potassium hydroxide (KOH). The silver is reduced at the cathode from Ag(I) to Ag, and the zinc is oxidized from Zn to Zn(II).
The half-cell reaction at the negative plate:
The reaction in the electrolyte:
The half-cell reaction at the positive plate:
Overall reaction (anhydrous form):
Until recently, all silver-oxide batteries contained up to 0.2% mercury. The mercury was incorporated into the zinc anode to inhibit corrosion in the alkaline environment. Sony started producing the first silver-oxide batteries without added mercury in 2004.
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- SR (Silver Oxide Battery) from Maxell